The world of LGBT-friendly fiction for teens and young adults is slowly growing, and certainly we expect most newly-published teen fiction to avoid homophobia, though heteronormativity and transphobia are both alarmingly common in the genre. Unfortunately for LGBT teens, though, most of these books, even the “friendly” ones, are written about LGBT teens but for straight readers, with an emphasis on promoting tolerance, or displaying the struggles against bullying, or otherwise trying to illuminate the minds of straight kids to the lives of gay kids. Tropes abound, and I’ve only found a few LGBT YA novels that I really think do a great deal in promoting not just tolerance, but show acceptance of LGBT teens not just as factors in the straight kids’ lives, but as complex, complete characters in their own right. Because April is LGBT Awareness Month, I decided to share some of my favorites.
As much attention as Glee has gotten lately for its portrayal of gay teens on television, I wasn’t so convinced. It’s great that there’s a main character on a TV show for gay and questioning youth (and everyone else) to see. It’s even better, and more encouraging, that the reponse to gay teens in primetime has been largely positive. Maybe the flood gates will open, and we’ll start seeing a more inclusive depiction of sexuality across the board. Read More Cheering Brittana